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Rebuilding credit after declaring bankruptcy in Washington

When you declare bankruptcy in Washington -- or anywhere else, for that matter -- it may have a large impact on your credit score. The impact is going to be different for all people, depending on factors like the amount of debt that they had and what type of bankruptcy they used, but it is common for a credit score to fall dramatically. Fortunately, it is also possible to build it back up again.

The first thing that you may want to consider is just looking at the credit report yourself. You should be looking for mistakes that could lower your score even more. You can then have them corrected so that the only negatives are those that belong there.

After that, you need to be dedicated to making good financial decisions. You want to get the money in for all of your recurring bills -- like your utilities payments or your phone payments -- on time. You also want to avoid taking out any more loans that you can't afford, only borrowing in a way that fits your budget.

Borrowing itself does help, though. If you get a credit card, you can make purchases on it and then pay the balance off all the way to zero at the end of the month. You want to avoid those interest charges. This shows responsible borrowing and can help your score, whereas not getting a card may not incur more debt, but it does not show lenders anything.

If you are thinking about bankruptcy, make sure you know everything about it, from the impact on your future to your legal options.

Source: The Huffington Post, "How to Rebuild Your Credit After Bankruptcy -- Fast" Curtis Arnold, Oct. 15, 2014

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